Thursday, February 23, 2012

Jaybird Carlock and the True Believers

Ever want to be able to do something, but just can't?  The desire and passion is there, but the skill and talent are not.  For me, it's a few things.  Now, many people will say that we can do whatever we want to do in this life, that anyone can learn, blah blah blah.  I always wanted to be able to draw.  Granted, anyone can "draw."  But I wanted to draw like my favorite comic book artists.  In the end, I never became that kind of artist.  I did start drawing seriously a few years ago in a series of scetchbooks - none of it spectacular, but still a fulfilling endeavor.  I created a few neat images.  In the true spirit of the word, it is "art."  Whatever that means.  But I never felt like I could call myself an artist.  I tried.  I really did.  I may even try again someday.

The same goes for music.  I have always wanted to be able to play a musical instrument.  If I could criticize my parents I would say that they should have pushed me to play something.  Anything.  But that is the past, and as we all know, the past is one stubborn son of a bitch.

In my defense, I did play hand bells for several years at the church I was raised in.  I can read sheet music.  But I'm also lazy, hence I never motivated myself to pick up a guitar like my friend down the street, who I think is now in some heavy metal band.  In the fifth grade I joined the school band, but was relegated to playing the clarinet ... because we had a clarinet in the house...  because my older brother played the clarinet.  For my parents, it was an economical choice.  Unfortunately, I hated playing the clarinet (even though I was second chair in the band. Boom!) 

In college, I bought an old guitar from a friend who said I could get my money back if I ever played it in front of an audience.  That's $25 I'll never see again.  Though I still have that guitar and was able to teach myself two chords.  (One more chord and I can write a song!) 

Four years ago I bought a violin and actually took lessons for a few years.  Expensive lessons.  I still love it, but we live in a small condo and the violin is too loud. 

Last year, I bought Lynette a ukulele and have been playing around with it.  I just learned how to play Happy Birthday on it!

Last week I bought a banjo.  A real, made in the USA banjo.  Last night was the first night I had a chance to sit down with it and start picking.  The fingerpicks are uncomfortable and will take some getting used to.  I had to stick a wadded up shirt in the "pot" to muffle the sound a bit, because James was trying to sleep.  A couple times I said to myself, "I can't believe I own a banjo."  Then again I'm also still saying, "I can't believe I have a son."

So maybe a banjo is like an infant son.   Y'all seen pictures, but don't fully appreciate its glory until you hold one. 

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